900 vs. 1100 Watt Microwave: What is the Difference?

Shopping for a new microwave oven but are at a crossroads between a 900 watts microwave and an 1100 watts model? 900-watt microwaves are relatively fast cookers and boast a wide interior capacity.

If interested in a commercial-grade microwave, an 1100 watts unit will work just fine.

See, although the difference in power between the 2 is relatively minimal (just 200), it has a great impact when cooking.

But does higher wattage mean a better microwave? Not really. Wattage brings along a list of considerations that can influence your decision.

In this post, we’ll take you through the difference between a 900-watt microwave and an 1100 watt microwave to help you make an informed buying decision.

What is the Difference Between 900 and 1100 Watt Microwave

900 vs. 1100 Watt Microwave


The first thing you’ll notice is that 900 watts and 1100 watts microwaves vary in size. In most cases, a lower wattage means a smaller size.

Although the size of a microwave may not be a big deal for you if you have a spacious countertop, it’s quite a big deal for those with limited counter space.

Higher watt microwaves take a lot of counter space but can accommodate larger food portions. This is why you’ll find 900-watt microwaves in different households and 1100-watt models in businesses as they can cook for more people at a go.

Another drawback for bigger microwaves is that they are quite difficult to move from one place to another.

Cooking Time

A smaller microwave limits not only your cooking time but also how fast things cook. It’s, therefore, true to say that an 1100 watts microwave will cook faster than a 900 watts model.

Actually, an 1100 watts microwave can take approximately 1 minute to boil water. It’ll also take lesser time to defrost frozen food than the 900-watt model.


Due to the smaller size, 900 watts microwaves come at a lower price than the 1100 versions. A more powerful model will also cost you more, meaning that you should be ready to part with a higher amount if interested in the 1100-watt model.

And since they come at a higher price, the bigger models usually have more settings and features.


Is 900 Watts the Best Wattage for Microwaves?

The best wattage is dictated by how you intend to use the microwave. For instance, if you have a small family and are getting the microwave for home cooking purposes only, a 900 watts unit is the best.

Also, if you live in a small apartment, have a small countertop, or are quite economical when it comes to electricity bills, you’ll love the 900 watts model. It will help you cook almost everything without giving you a run for your money.

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Is 1100 Watts too Much for a Home Microwave?

An 1100 watts microwave for a home might appear excessive, but it is worthwhile for you if you can afford it. There is no rule banning you from using this microwave for light-duty reheating purposes. It’ll actually give you lightning-fast results.

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Convection microwaves require more wattage to work their other modes. Therefore if you can get one with a higher wattage, the better. It will help maximize their capabilities.

What’s the Highest Wattage of a Microwave?

The highest wattage of a microwave is around 2.4 kilowatts. These are usually heavy-duty commercial-grade microwaves.

The 2.4 kilowatts models usually weigh 70 pounds and are quite expensive (typically cost up to $2000).

The highest wattage for a residential microwave has a wattage of around 1.3 kilowatts. It can serve 6 to 8 persons at most.

How will you Know the Wattage of a Microwave?

When shopping for a microwave oven, check the descriptions on the box, the front of your microwave, or on the user manual for the wattage. You can also search it online once you identify the model or make of the unit you have in mind.

You can also check the inside of the microwave if the wattage isn’t listed on the front. Inside, you should find a label with the manufacturer’s name, model number, and the watts it uses.

So, Which is Better, the 900 Watts or the 1100 Watts Microwave?

Both microwaves work great. The better model will vary from person to person. Remember, while your needs require the attention of a 900 watts model, your friend’s might only be met with the 1100 watts unit(1).

You might not require a microwave of higher wattage if living on your own, but what of people with large families? A small microwave would be a kitchen inconvenience.

And although the 200 watts difference might appear small, it means a lot. The 200 watts can save you time in the kitchen and enable you to cook more in a short time.


Each microwave varies in one way or the other from the rest. It’s, therefore, quite important that you read the wattage and features of the unit you have in mind before making the purchase.

If looking for a microwave to help you prepare different meals for your family fast, a 900 watts model will do you justice. On the other hand, if interested in a more powerful and bigger microwave to help you run your catering business, get the 1100 watts model.

In general, the higher the wattage a microwave comes with, the bigger and more powerful it is.  And before purchasing, go through the description of the microwave. It is very important.

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